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3 Last minute predictions for UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Lewis

UFC Fight Night Blaydes v Lewis: Weigh-Ins
UFC Fight Night Blaydes v Lewis: Weigh-Ins
SENIOR ANALYST
Modified 20 Feb 2021
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This weekend's UFC Fight Night: Blaydes vs. Lewis is just a few hours away from kicking off. Combat sports fans are excited to see the Heavyweight bout that can define the division's future, as are bookmakers.

Betting numbers have never been this good in the United States since several states around the country are now regulating gambling and online sports betting.

But what are the most off-the-radar picks that will break the bank for this weekend's UFC event?

#1 UFC Fight Night: Curtis Blaydes vs Derrick Lewis

No. 2 in the UFC Heavyweight rankings, Curtis Blaydes is getting extremely close to his career's first title shot. "Razor" has a winning streak of four fights coming into the face-off with Derrick Lewis. He only holds two losses in his MMA record - both to Francis Ngannou.

Arguably the best wrestler among the Heavyweights, Blaydes has a fairly large advantage over Lewis for this UFC Fight Night main event.

Blaydes broke the UFC record for the most takedowns landed in a heavyweight bout during his last fight against Alexander Volkov - a staggering 14 successful attempts. That is a critical stats to have in mind when staking your money.

However, Lewis is no stranger to winning. Ranking No. 4 amidst the Heavyweights, he comes to this UFC Fight Night aiming to unarm Blaydes' favoritism. The 36-year-old fighter holds a respectful sequence of three victories in his last three bouts.

Lewis had a shot at the Heavyweight championship in 2018, when Daniel Cormier beat him in his UFC career's sole submission loss. However, he has lost four times via knockout.

Even if Lewis manages to avoid the ground fight, Blaydes is still a menacing threat standing up which makes "Razor" our favorite pick for this UFC Fight Night main event.

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The pick: Curtis Blaydes to win via second-round KO

#2 UFC Fight Night: Aleksei Oleinik vs Chris Daukaus

Another Heavyweight bout in the main card of the night will have submission-master Aleksei Oleinik facing newcomer Chris Daukaus - who has aggregated two wins in his first two fights in the UFC last year.

However, none of Daukaus' opponents were qualified grapplers like Oleinik. Serving as the division's gatekeeper for UFC, the Russian veteran opposes the idea that his career is close to an end.

Oleinik has achieved five out of his six UFC victories via submission, including two Ezekiel chokes, which to date remain the only submissions of the kind to ever happen in the UFC.

The pick: Aleksei Oleinik to win via submission.

#3 UFC Fight Night: Ketlen Vieira vs Yana Kunitskaya

This weekend's UFC Fight Night co-main event is a women's Bantamweight bout between No. 6 ranked Ketlen Vieira and No. 7 Yana Kunitskaya.

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But the winner of this bout might get more than only an upgrade to the division's top 5. The weight class is extremely tangled at the moment, with the champion Amanda Nunes being a clear cut above all other contenders.

Vieira's standing-up game is reasonably poor, especially when compared to Kunitskaya's arsenal. If the Brazilian does not manage to bring "Foxy" to the ground, there will be one definite winner at the end of this bout.

The pick: Yana Kunitskaya to win via KO

Published 20 Feb 2021, 11:12 IST
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